Northern part of the Assake-Audan depression

Country/territory: Uzbekistan

IBA Criteria met: A1, A3 (2008)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 5,288 ha

Uzbekistan Society for the Protection of Birds
Most recent IBA monitoring assessment
Year of assessment Threat score (pressure) Condition score (state) Action score (response)
2008 low not assessed not assessed
For more information about IBA monitoring please click here

Site description
The IBA is located in the south of the Karakalpak Ustyurt in the Asske-Audan depression. In the past the southern parts of the Assake-Audan and Sarykamish Depressions formed a common lake basin through which the Amudarya flowed and where the Uzboy river began flowing into the Kaspiy. Currently this is rather deep depression is difficult to access and has well-marked precipices in some places. There are several artesian wells with brackish water in the depression. There are dense thickets of reed and tamarisk around the wells covering about 2.5 km2. The site includes part of the depression and the adjoining highlands in the north and north-west with Haloxylon forests.

Key biodiversity
The number of species occurring at Assake-Audan is not known accurately as it is a place where many species passing the Ustyurt Plateau stop. Their occurrence is connected with the availability of water. Also Assake-Audan is situated between the Kaspiy, the Aral and the northern part of Sarykamysh lake so that it functions as a staging post for birds on several intersecting of flyways. Two days of IBA fieldwork recorded Ardea cinerea, Accipiter nisus, Circus cyaneus, Rallus aquaticus, Calandrella rufescens, Hirundo rustica, Motacilla alba, Luscinia svecica, Cettia cetti, Sylvia curruca, Phylloscopus collybita, Fringilla coelebs, Fringilla montifringilla, Rhodospiza obsoletus, Passer domesticus, Sturnus vulgaris, Emberiza bruniceps and Corvus frugilegus. The remains of a dead gull were also found.

Non-bird biodiversity: The mammal fauna is very similar to that of the Ustyurt in general. Typical species include Ovis vignei (UzRDB) which was present in 1956; and Gazella subgutturosa (UzRDB) and Saiga tatarica (RL). Paraemichinus hupomelas (UzRDB) and Testudo horsfieldi (RL) occur according to the literature. Flora: Malococarpus crithmifolius and Euphortia sclerocyathium are included in the National Red Book.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Northern part of the Assake-Audan depression. Downloaded from on 26/09/2022.